Just wanted to quickly write a few things about my recent experience at the Walnut Ridge tour. As far as the results of the actual event are concerned, it was horrible to say the least. I walked away very displeased with myself , but find that my awful performance will help me in the future. We'll get to the driving later. I could write a long memoir about the trip and include many details about my feelings, observations, moments of boredom/glory, etc , but then none of you will read this crap and therefore I will try to cut it very, very short.
First of all, I had a great time! This is mostly due to many of the members of our Saint Louis community. Despite the fact that I was away from Saint Louis, having all of you there made me fell right at home. I had a great time with my roommates James Elterman and Jeff Templeton. I realize that they had a tough time putting up with me, but that is the price they pay for having offered to be roommates. It makes me upset sometimes knowing that all the help, advice, and motivation that Jeff and James have given me, ended up with me choking/screwing up at the event. In time, I will make up for that and hopefully let them realize that their efforts are not in vain.
Next up I wanted to thank Lynn for helping me with the STi, giving me a great co-driver, and for kicking my @$$ in my own vehicle. I still love Lynn, but deep down inside I have thoughts of revenge. I had an absolute great time with Jerry Crump (a.k.a. "The Ladies Man") and the Maupin clan ( big Kudos to Patrick who was my camera man). One thing which I especially loved was seeing Patrick get all fired up about someone else taking MY/LYNN's spot. It was not even his spot to fight over but the boy was ready to kill anything that breathed. Nice guys with a penchant for violence have always been my kind of friends. Aside from that, I have bits and pieces of fond memories, jokes, advice, and good times from the usual suspects ( Chris, Andy, Bryan, Martha, Jan, Mike V., etc.). Additionally, I had a great time meeting people from other regions ( especially the other guys in my car class, STU guys- I LOVE YA! , even Branden ).
As for my driving, I was really pumped up about the event for weeks and somewhat nervous. I had about a million thoughts going through my mind per second. Then I added insult to injury and had a Red Bull about 25 minutes before I pulled up the car to the starting line. I was basically on cocaine when I pulled off the line. It was my time to show these guys what I am about and I was overly aggressive ( as usual) and I totally screwed up, locked up the front wheels, coned, and killed my run. The next two runs I was completely over-cautious and my runs looked like scenes from the movie: "Driving Miss Daisy". I felt much better on the second day and just decided to be myself. The first day jitters were gone and I was ready to roll. My first two runs were not that bad and I was hanging in there with the mid-pack guys in terms of times. Unfortunately, I got a little too greedy ( as usual) on my third run and made some minor, but costly, mistakes. I shaved off some additional time but the rest of the guys, had really great time improvements and kicked me to the curb. I will learn from all of this and try to be a smooth operator for future events. Thanks to everyone who helped in making this a great experience and I look forward to many more of these.